An update: pregnancy, the home birth book and definitely not feeling blessed

Remember when I was really excited about my home birth book project? And how I didn’t say anything about it for a while, and then I was consumed with Listen To Your Mother, and then I was obsessing about why, at this stage of my pregnancy, I can’t just wear a damn two piece swimsuit at the pool, (or wear anything anywhere for that matter) without being a spectacle…

Right. For much of that time, I was busy coming up with reasons excuses not to work on the book. Like, I was too busy with Listen To Your Mother, and then I was feeling uncreative and tired, which was (mostly) justifiable because of it being so late in my pregnancy, and then I was feeling just totally uninspired about the whole project and I was thinking the whole idea was stupid and I shouldn’t even pursue it, even though I have done a fair bit of work on it thus far.

And then something awesome happened, which I never mentioned here or on any social media because I am really fed up with the hashtag #blessed or anything that might resemble it. This New York Times article says it better than I ever could. Or if you’re not going to click over there, this pretty much sums it up:

…calling something “blessed” has become the go-to term for those who want to boast about an accomplishment while pretending to be humble, fish for a compliment, acknowledge a success (without sounding too conceited), or purposely elicit envy.

(But you should really click on that article, if only to read the hilarious tweet about the bacon.

What happened was, Dan insisted that I put Sweet Pea in daycare all five days last week so that I could get more rest as my due date was approaching (it’s today).  Normally she goes two days a week, which I consider a luxury. I felt horribly guilty about the idea of putting her in daycare all five days… Not because she hates it (she loves it), not because of the expense (well, not entirely, but somewhat), and not because I would miss spending time with her (I spend plenty of time with her). Mostly because I feel being her mom is my only job right now (I haven’t taken a shift at the hospital in a while) and I felt like a fraud, taking time off from my responsibilities.

But then Dan texted the daycare people and got Sweet Pea in on the extra days and it didn’t matter that I felt like I didn’t deserve a whole week to myself. It was happening, either way. Even with a daily nap/lie down/episode of Breaking Bad along with time to check off items on my to do list, lunches with friends, and errands, I still had a lot of time on my hands. There was no reason not to pick up where I left off with my book.

I reached out to a home birth Facebook group, requesting interviews. I emailed people I had been meaning to email for weeks. I expected nothing. After all, people are busy and I’m no one important. But an amazing thing happened. I got responses to my requests. People wanted to talk to me! Lots of people wanted to talk to me! And after they talked to me, they told their friends and they emailed to tell me they want to talk to me, too.

As I talk to people, I am learning so much. I am learning about all the different ways a home birth can look, including not just the birth itself, but also the prenatal and postpartum care. I am learning what questions I might not need to ask and what questions I ought to be asking. I am learning how to be a better listener and I am learning how to phrase my questions to get the richest answers. I learned that if my i phone isn’t on airplane mode and a call comes in during an interview, it will erase everything that I recorded on using my i recorder app. I learned that my cordless phone only holds a charge for so long and I learned that transcription is a b*tch and paying someone else to do it is usually about $1/minute of audio.

I learned all over again what a patient listener Dan is because there is so much to obsess over when you embark on a project like this. I learned (for the millionth time in my life) that starting is the hardest part and how easy it is to confuse fear with a legitimate reason for not moving forward.

I’m learning that people are excited about my book. I’m re-discovering how excited I am about my book.

Meanwhile I’m sort of ambivalent about the baby. Is that horrible to say? I’m in a groove with this book project and as much as I don’t want to be pregnant anymore, and I’m not scared or nervous about actually giving birth, I’m not excited about it either. I know it’s going to hurt and I know it’s going to be hard. If it’s anything like Sweet Pea’s birth it will also be transformative and awesome but it’s hard to get excited about that. I don’t exactly feel like transforming right now, other than I’d like to be able to put on my strappy sandals independently.

PS If you would like to know a bit more about the book or be interviewed for it, go here. Thanks!

8 thoughts on “An update: pregnancy, the home birth book and definitely not feeling blessed

  1. Ann says:

    You are so awesome, Pam. And of course you aren’t looking forward to labor!! Love that you’re nesting with your book. Sending love and strength for delivery!! xoxo

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